Bringing a dog into you household, into your family, into your life is a big deal. It's a big commitment and you need to make sure you're ready for it.
Once you do make the decision, however, the first thing you should do is visit an animal shelter.
A lot of people have the dog breed they want in mind when getting their first pet. They'll most likely look for someone who's selling the exact puppy that they want. But what people fail to realize is that there are plenty of animals, including puppies, who need a home much more.
You never know what you'll find or who you'll meet in an animal shelter. You might lock eyes and fall in love with a dog there. And by adopting them, you've easily just impacted their life the best way possible.
If you're looking into getting a new dog, stopping by an animal shelter won't hurt. Here's a few photos of rescued dogs to show you just how happy they are when humans adopt them.
#1. Poor guy was adopted twice and returned twice.
But now he has a a best friend for life.
#2. Looks like this one had a little too much with his first toy during his first day home.
Don’t worry bud, you’ll have plenty of time to play with that toy and much more.
#3. "Mom and Dad's favorite photo they took of me when they first got me."
Doesn’t he look handsome?
#4. He adopted a former Russian guard dog.
Well he doesn’t look as intimidating as a guard dog anymore.
#5. A pup who can't help its smile on Adoption Day.
How can you not adopt this pup?
#6. This is Charlie during his first day home.
This is a cuteness overload!
#7. Looks like this one's stoked to finally have a place to call home.
Now he can sleep in whatever position he wishes.
#8. Did he adopt a deer or a dog?
Either way, the pet looks like he loves his new home and human.
#9. This poor little dog that got adopted in Afghanistan.
This shows that dogs from all over the world need rescuing!
#10. Strays can be pets too. Meet Duncan!
He’s possibly the happiest dog on the block.
#11. It's time for another adoption day!
But honestly, who wouldn’t want to take this pup home?
#12. "Hello, my name is Ripley and I was adopted today."
Hi Ripley, you have some really lucky parents!
#13. Can you believe this puppy was abandoned?!
Good thing these humans found him and adopted him right away.
#14. This is Old Man Max on his first day home from the shelter.
And he is just filled with energy and happiness.
#15. This bud was adopted from Bulgaria.
Another dog adopted and saved from around the world!
#16. Aww, they're already bonding!
Such gorgeous looking kids next to each other.
#17. Remember that the day you adopt a pup could be that pup's best day of his or her life.
Just look at how priceless this moment is.
#18. Another dog rescued from the streets.
I think she’s super happy she’s not on the streets anymore.
#19. He's proud and wants to declare it!
And we’re happy to see his declaration.
#20. A rescued chocolate lab passed out during his first day home.
Look, he’s smiling in his sleep!
#21. Kaia's first day home from the shelter with her new parents!
Looks like a happy little family already.
#22. First ride home from the shelter at the age of 11.
And he looks like he’s never been any happier.
#23. Another rescue mission accomplished!
One of the best dates you can take your girlfriend on: rescuing a pup.
#24. The first day home and away from the shelter can be very tiring.
But he looks very happy and relaxed to be there.
#25. He waited 8 months to finally have a home of his own.
And his wish came true on Christmas when his caretaker adopted him.
#26. Another rescue puppy on its very first day home.
Looks like a beautiful start to a joyful life.
#27. Sometimes spontaneous decisions are the best decisions of your lives.
Especially ones that involve rescuing a dog.
#28. And here we have the face you make when you realize you've just been adopted.
Doesn’t it make your heart melt?